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Canada terminates $222M PPE deal following forced labour probe
Do you know where your personal protective equipment is coming from?
Canada is revoking two supply contracts with Supermax Healthcare Canada worth more than $222 million, following allegations that the nitrile gloves it manufactured in Malaysia for use by Canadian health-care workers were made with forced labour.
Marketplace has been on the case for more than a year, following a 2021 investigation that found ‘appalling’ conditions in a Malaysian PPE factory supplying Canadian hospitals.
At that time, documents we reviewed showed that millions of disposable gloves, manufactured in conditions that experts say have the hallmarks of forced labour, have come into our ports. Read more
He survived open heart surgery. But now he faces an even bigger threat
When Paul Johnson was diagnosed with a defect in his aortic valve at 15, he was told that one day he’d likely require surgery on his heart.
But after it finally happened, at the age of 62 in 2015, he’d soon face an even greater challenge: complications from a slow-growing bacteria, called M. chimaera, ravaging his body.
Johnson was exposed to the virus during his open heart surgery after a contaminated medical device produced by a company called LifeNova was used in the operating room.
Now 68, he sits in constant pain, unable to move freely around his house on his own. He takes a cocktail of antibiotics and painkillers every day, and his wife, Cathy Johnson, has become his full-time caregiver.
Johnson is now part of a class-action lawsuit against LifeNova that counts at least a dozen other patients with confirmed infections as members. Read more
Some travellers question allowing travellers from U.S. to skip quarantine
If you’ve ever spent any time in quarantine, you’re probably familiar with how long the days can feel while you’re isolating at home.
But some Canadian travellers arriving from countries around the world are wondering why they have to quarantine at all — especially when travellers coming from the U.S. don’t have to.
“There’s something fishy,” said Kevin McNally of Gatineau, Que., who flew from Panama to Montreal on Jan. 7. He spent six days in quarantine before he received his negative PCR test result.
“I felt like a prisoner in my own country and yet an American can come over here and not quarantine,” said McNally. “It makes no sense.” Read more
No masks, big problem. More than 1,700 air travellers broke the rules last year
There are rules. But they still didn’t follow them. And while the spotlight was on a group of partiers on a Sunwing flight from Montreal to Mexico in December, they were hardly alone.
More than 1,700 passengers refused to wear masks during flights on Canadian air carriers last year — a problem the union representing many of Canada’s flight attendants says is getting worse.
The head of the Canadian Union of Public Employees’ airline division says that many Canadians who appear to be sick of pandemic rules and regulations are lashing out at them
“We have had incidents that have escalated to a physical nature,” said Wesley Lesosky. “We have had issues of obviously being sworn at, we have had issues of being spit at. We have had issues of just disgruntled people. We have had people [who] are just ticked off with the mask policy.”
According to Lesosky, passengers are increasingly ignoring the requirement to wear masks on flights when not eating or drinking. Read more
What else is going on?
Canada’s inflation rate rises to new 30-year high of 4.8%
Grocery prices increasing at fastest pace in more than a decade
Is it time for a shorter work week?
Some advocates say shorter weeks boost productivity and prioritize workers’ health.
Mahruse brand Halva with Black Seeds recalled due to Salmonella
The recalled product should be thrown out.
Kattnakken Junior Rain Jacket recalled due to strangulation hazard
Consumers should immediately remove the drawstring from the children’s upper outerwear to eliminate the hazard.
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